The Southeast Asian countries are gradually tasting the flavor of public-private partnerships (PPP) in the infrastructure domain. The landscape of private participation has evolved over the years. While Singapore and the Philippines were frontrunners in adopting the model, countries such as Indonesia, Vietnam, and Myanmar are now taking concrete steps towards increasing private participation across infrastructure sectors. Our focus story, “PPPs in Action”, presents an overview of how private investment can make a huge difference to infrastructure creation.

The transmission and distribution networks in the region have expanded rapidly by about 70 per cent to reach 3.6 million kilometres in 2016 as per the International Energy Agency’s Southeast Asia Energy Outlook. As a result, there is need for a commensurate increase in the distribution networks. Our story, “Focus on Distribution” gives an overview of the distribution sector across select countries in the region.

The past three to four years have seen key domestic oil producers and international oil companies in the region moving away other regions such as the US that offered comparatively higher returns and shorter project development time.  The story “Tough Times Ahead” talks about the rise of domestic energy independents in Southeast Asia.

Expansion and modernisation of port infrastructure is on the cards for several countries in the region. As part of the Vietnam Seaport Development Strategy, recently the second expansion project of the Tien Sa Port was inaugurated. Our story, “Upscaling Infrastructure” gives a brief synopsis of the expansion of Tien Sa port and its associated facilities.

Deployment of bank cards for transit ticketing is a recent phenomenon in the region. It is currently limited to transit agencies in countries with well developed public transport systems such as Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand. Our story “Towards Smart ticketing” gives an overview of the limited but increasing deployment of bank cards in transportation. The recent years have witnessed increasing popularity of an array of digital payment modes, such as mobile payments, digital wallets or e-wallets and stored value cards to make payments, conduct transactions and for money transfers.. The story, “Going Cashless” gives an update on the digital payments market expansion across the region.

Financing continues to be a vexed issue for the region. In a bid to sustain the rapid increase in investment requirement coupled with the fossil fuel intensive nature of most infrastructure development has underlined the need to shift from carbon intensive industries to green industries like renewable energy. The story “Clean Financing” gives an insight on increasing role of the green bond market in the region.